Value and savings: 9 ways a small business can stay on budget and save with FedEx
Here are 9 simple tips to help you get the most value out of shipping with FedEx:
1. Open a business account and always log in for discounted shipments
Just opening an account gets you multiple discounts. It’s easy and free.
- Make sure your whole team knows to sign into the account to ship. We talked to customers, and it’s one of the most common mistakes people make. Teams try to save time by not signing in, so their discounts aren’t applied to their shipping cost.
2. Join My FedEx Rewards
Earn name-brand gift cards and merchandise when you ship and print. Perks are nice. Enough said. Enroll now.
3. Choose the most cost-effective shipping options for your needs
FedEx has options for pretty much any shipping scenario and budget. When you have more time, day-definite shipping service (e.g. 2-day shipping) is more economical than time-definite service (e.g. 2nd business day by 10:30 a.m.). Check the transit maps to see how far you can go (even to Canada).
- FedEx Ground® service is very economical and can have surprisingly short transit times. Closer destinations can have transit times as little as one business day. And it’s a day-definite service. You’ll know what day your shipment is scheduled to arrive before you ship.
- For shipments to Canada, you can save by shipping via FedEx International Ground®. Also, take advantage of delivery flexibility and consider FedEx International Economy® to help you save money on import and export shipping.
- If you have many shipments going to the same destination on the same day, consider grouping them and using the FedEx Ground Multiweight® pricing option.
- Check rates now with our rating tools.
4. Pay attention to fees
Find out in advance which fees and surcharges apply to your shipments to help you avoid unexpected charges. And provide accurate declared value estimates on your shipping documentation.
5. Use drop-off options to avoid pickup charges
Along with saving you money, later drop-offs can save the day for all your last-minute shipments. Find your nearest drop-off location.
- Drop your express packages in a FedEx Express® Drop Box. There are thousands throughout the U.S., and many have extended drop-off times.
- Drop off your shipment at any of our 2,000+ FedEx Office® locations in the U.S. Or drop off at one of thousands of authorized pharmacies, grocery stores, and ship centers.
- Save with our new FedEx Express® and FedEx Ground® Automated Pickup service1. It’s $13/week and the fee is waived on the weeks with no pickups. Your FedEx automation system2 will alert us when you create your first shipment of the day, and we’ll only pick up on the days you need to ship.
6. Use FedEx software to avoid address errors
Manage your shipping online using FedEx Ship Manager®. You can create shipping labels using your customized online address book, request a rate quote, and check transit times. The software even verifies addresses for you. You can also integrate with the third-party shipping software and sales platforms you’re already using. Check out FedEx® Compatible software.
7. Package your shipments efficiently to reduce cost
If you’re shipping a package, your shipping rate can be affected by the package’s dim weight. “Dim” is shorthand for dimensional. The cost of shipping a package in many cases depends on how much space it takes up in a truck or airplane.
A truckload of pillows costs more to ship than a pallet of bricks. This is because the pallet takes up less space, and the truck can be filled with hundreds of other packages. Why should you care about this when it comes to packaging? Because efficient packaging protects your shipment without taking up any extra space, so you get the lowest rate possible. Use our dim weight calculator to see the difference.
Another helpful tip: don’t assume the original packaging is enough. If you’re buying products for redistribution, keep the following in mind. The products may be packaged in bulk and shipped safely enough to you on pallets. But once off the pallet, single boxes may not withstand the rigors of transport. Consult with our packaging lab to evaluate your packaging. Visit the How to pack basics and guides page to find tips for how packaging can help you reduce damages and save on shipping.
8. Avoid surprises on your freight shipping
If you’re shipping freight, there are ways to make it more efficient.
- Check in with your freight sales rep at least once a year to update your freight rates. If you’re running a dock computer with shipping software, your programs may be quoting you old pricing.
- Make sure your team is paying attention to whether or not the destination has a dock. No dock means you’ll need to request a liftgate for the delivery. And not having a liftgate when you need one delays your delivery and can cause extra fees.
- Check out the FedEx API Integration Program. With the program, you can automate freight functions and get auto-populated bills of lading. Automation can also do things like automatically email freight tracking info to customers, which cuts down on hundreds of routine customer service calls.
9. Call the Great Rates Hotline for last minute savings on international shipping
Do you use websites to get the best last-minute rates on hotels and airline tickets? Same concept here. Go to the FedEx® Great Rates site for more info or call 1.877.463.7408, Monday–Friday, 8 a.m.– 8 p.m. EST. Have your FedEx account number, shipment origin and destination countries, weight, and dimensions ready before calling.
Need help finding solutions and savings? Request a consult.
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1 To initiate a pickup, create and transmit your first shipment of the day before your designated daily cutoff time, which you will receive at enrollment.
2 Automation solutions include FedEx Ship Manager® at fedex.com, FedEx Web Services, FedEx Ship Manager® Software, and FedEx Ship Manager® Server.